Texans need no Luck at all

TEXANS ROUNDTABLE PRESENTED BY TEXAS STAR GRILL SHOP

The Texans have a big challenge when it comes to winning the AFC South again this season.

The division got better with Jacksonville adding QB Nick Foles, but one thing that helps the Texans is Andrew Luck's inability to stay healthy.

ESPN 97.5's Joel Blank, Barry Laminack, and Raheel Ramzanali talk about Andrew Luck's leg injury, and discuss if the key to winning the division comes down to the play of Houston's defense, or the health of Andrew Luck. The Texans Roundtable is presented by Texas Star Grill Shop.

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The Rockets selected Reed Sheppard.Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images.

The Houston Rockets selected Reed Sheppard with the third overall pick in the NBA draft Wednesday night, adding an elite long-range shooter to their young team.

The guard, who spent one season at Kentucky, was the first American taken in this year's draft after French players Zaccharie Risacher and Alex Sarr were selected by Atlanta and Washington with the top two picks.

Sheppard averaged 12.5 points, 4.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 2.5 steals while appearing in 33 games for the Wildcats. He shot 52.1% from 3-point range and made 83.1% of his free throws. He was the only player in the nation last season to have at least 145 assists, 80 steals and make at least 75 3-pointers.

Sheppard became the second player in school history to have at least 80 steals in a season despite starting just five games. It’s the 17th consecutive year that Kentucky has had at least one player selected in the NBA draft.

At 6-foot-2 and 182 pounds, Sheppard is among the smallest players in this year's draft, but is also thought by many draft analysts to be the best shooter. He turned 20 on Monday.

Sheppard is the latest high draft pick to join the rebuilding Rockets in recent years. They took Amen Thompson fourth last year after adding Jabari Smith Jr. with the third pick in 2022 and Jalen Green second in 2021.

The Rockets missed the playoffs for a fourth straight season this year but made a significant jump in their first year under coach Ime Udoka after adding veterans Dillon Brooks and Fred VanVleet. Houston went 41-41 after winning just 17, 20 and 22 games in the previous three seasons.

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